Tip the Balance of Calories in Your Favor
You have probably heard that the key to weight loss is to burn more calories than you consume; but have you thought about how much activity it actually takes to work off your favorite foods? The table below lists the calorie content of some popular food items. It also tells you how many hours and minutes it would likely take for a 150 lb. person to burn those calories with different types of activity. Keep in mind that the actual amount of calories you exert is dependent on your individual body weight. The more you weigh the more calories each activity will burn:
Sitting & Reading
1 hr 52 min
8 hr 29 min
1 hr 24 min
1 hr 6 min
4 hr 18 min
19 hr 35 min
1 Slice Cheese Pizza (from a large with thin crust)
1 hr 40 min
7 hr 36 min
Fried Chicken Breast
2 hr 18 min
10 hr 32 min
Medium French Fries
2 hr 26 min
11 hr 7 min
6” Tuna Sub
3 hr 1 min
13 hr 45 min
12 oz. Vanilla Milk Shake
1 hr 9 min
3 hr 32 min
16 hr 5 min
Taking this information into account may make some of those tempting foods seem less appealing. Just remember there are about 3500 calories in one pound of fat. In order to lose one pound a week, you must burn 500 calories more per day than you consume. This can be done through a combination of decreasing calorie intake while increasing activity. Reducing portion sizes, steering clear of sugar-sweetened drinks, altering recipes to cut the calorie content, and leaving off cheese and high calorie condiments, like mayonnaise, are steps in the right direction toward limiting calories.
In addition, making a conscious effort to move more, even in the smallest activities, can make a big difference over time in the weight control battle. See the table below for examples:
Estimated Calories Burned
Option to Burn More Calories
Estimated Calories Burned
Letting the dog out the back door.
Walking the dog for 30 minutes.
Sitting in the recliner while talking on the phone for 30 minutes.
Standing up while talking on the phone for 30 minutes.
Hiring a lawn service
30 minutes gardening and 30 minutes using a push mower once weekly.
Internet shopping for one hour.
Walking around the mall for one hour.
Taking the nearest parking spot and walking 10 seconds to the store.
Parking farther away and walking 1 minute to the store.
Do the math, if you start taking opportunities to eat a few less and to burn a few more calories here and there, it can lead to gradual, but significant, weight loss. Don’t miss these chances to tip the balance of calories in versus calories out in your favor.